Date: 30th November 2010 at 9:33am
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What we as football fans witnessed last night at the Nou Camp was nothing short of amazing. Barcelona ripped Real Madrid apart in what was a great display of football. Even Jose ‘The Special One’ Mourinho will admit that he and his team were outclassed by Barcelona. 5-0 is a beating in any game and Barcelona did it with ease.

There is no denying the fact that Barcelona have quality world class players all over the pitch, not to mention they have Messi who orchestrated the destruction last night. If you look at the way Barcelona played it is a matter of keeping the ball, passing to the nearest player and then moving into space, rounded off with clinical finishing. Now at Liverpool we seem to do the opposite. We struggle to keep possession and when we do we stray our passes. When we are in front of goal we miss!

What hurts me this morning after watching El Classico last night is that in the 70’s and 80’s, Liverpool were not too far off playing the kind of football Barcelona are playing now. We passed the ball well, we kept possession and we had the strikers who could not miss. Bill Shankly must be turning in his grave now after seeing the way Liverpool are playing and that there is a team out there like Barcelona that are playing the kind of football Shankly wanted Liverpool to play.
In the words of Shankly, ‘Football is a simple game based on the giving and taking of passes, of controlling the ball and of making yourself available to receive a pass. It is terribly simple.’

Liverpool Football Club manager Bill Shankly (1913 -1981) receives the praise of jubilant fans after FA Cup winning, Liverpool's 6-5 defeat (after penalties) of League champions and bitter rivals, Leeds United, in the Charity Shield at Wembley.   (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

Now imagine if Liverpool were to be able to play like that today. I doubt Roy Hodgson is the right man to instill that kind of mind set at Liverpool and identify the right players to carry out that philosophy. But one can not lay all the blame on Roy if we want to play like Barcelona: Look at the Barcelona setup. The way they are playing is a culture instilled in them from the time they are 10 years old. The players come through the youth system all being nurtured to play the Barcelona style of football. So by the time they get to the first team they slot right in thus you see the likes of Pedro and Bojan being able to fit into the current Barcelona team whereas Mascherano has struggled to break into the team and Ibrahimovic failed to make it at Barcelona.

Maybe that is why Mr. Henry want to totally rebuild Liverpool, starting with the youth and finding a style of play that we can carry out through the team from the Under 10’s to the first team. If that is the case then we may just have to wait until todays Under 10’s are in their 20’s for us to enjoy success again at Liverpool and play attractive footy like Barcelona are today.

Would you rather Liverpool spend millions today to buy players to bring us success or build from our youth to give us success in 10 years time?

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3 responses to “Imagine if Liverpool played like Barcelona – That is what Shankly would have wanted”

  1. Ronnie says:

    I voted for ‘invest in youth’ but in truth we need to do both, you need to invest in youth to have a future but you must have a present or else the cream of the youth will choose to go elsewhere! If we do not qualify for CL this season and people like Torres leave what kind of message does that send out to the talented kids; dont go to Liverpool it will hinder your career. thankfully i think Mr Henry shares this view as it also co-incides with making money off the pitch!

  2. Jay Wright says:

    What kind of message does it send out to talented kids when they see talented youngsters already at the club summarily dismissed by the manager following an isolated poor performance, while he continues to stick with (and even praise!) similarly underperforming experienced players, game after game after game??

    You can have all the talent that you could ever want in your reserves, but unless you have a manager that is brave enough to trust them, then it is all just a massive waste